Wednesday, January 9, 2013

New Fishin' Partner

Pete with a keeper!
It's been a busy week with the outcomes significantly better than last week.  During the last Green Bay Packer/ Viking game of the regular season my neighbor Pete Sipe had suggested that we should go ice fishing the following weekend after New Years, I about fell off my chair.  Pete lives down the block from me and we have a lot in common.  He owns the Marathon Service Station in Osseo, MN.  After securing a job in Minneapolis, my first apartment was in Osseo.  I would drive by his house every morning, patronize his then father's gas station, certainly had seen him many times without knowing 20 years later he'd be one of my trusted friends.  I have asked Petey at least 100 times to come fishing with me and this time he agreed.  Now the pressure was on, where to go, what strategy, I didn't want his first trip with me to be his last.  I suppose I should have had more confidence in him as he was just looking for a good outing, something I'm sure we accomplished.  Deciding on Mille Lacs, the fishing reports have been good, the ice conditions were stable, and with clear water to try his new camera, away we went.  Although the reports of 15 inch ice is adequate for driving, it's still a little early for me to be free ranging around the lake, especially with the new cracks present.  Bringing my side by side ATV, we decided to pull our shacks out after crossing the first bridge over the heave that always forms near Indian Point.  Our first stop was a deep gravel hump a couple of miles east of the point.  Usually at this time of year there are a few shacks parked in the middle of this area yet upon arrival there was only evidence of a wheel house that had come and gone.  Setting up on the edge it wasn't long before Petey nailed this nice keeper walleye.  This area was simply a stop on our way to Sherman's Flat, an area reported to have a hot bite.

23 inch walleye
Within an hour we were set up on Sherman's Flat in an area that I am very familiar with.  On an edge near one of the points,  it is one of my go to spots on the lake both summer and winter.  Drilling holes along the top 24 foot edge as well as the 34 foot bottom edge, all we needed was some cooperative fish.  They were hard to come by.  Marking fish, they would come up and look at the bait, hang for a few seconds and disappear.  As always I drill about 10 - 15 holes for moving around, the flats provide the perfect place to apply this strategy.  24 feet...........34 feet.........24 feet, moving up and down produced nothing.  Fishing a hole just outside my portable shack, I set my rod down as I went back into the shack to get something, returning a minute later and picking up my ice fishing rod, it bent over.  Getting the fish up from 24 feet, it was a nice 23 inch walleye.  Unlike the last nice walleye I had caught on Mille Lacs a few weeks ago this fish was fat a sassy.  A beautiful golden green color, it looked well fed and healthy, something that was nice to see.  With sundown close this had to be a sure sign the bite would materialize.  Unfortunately it was not the case.  We managed to mark a few more fish yet 2 were all the day would bring.  Packing up at dark we headed back to the truck, stopping at Lundeens before having lunch at the newly opened Chico's.  When we stopped at Bill's, I was going to comment on how small his fatheads were.  Being busy he asked me if I could help myself to the minnows we needed so I scooped the fatheads out of the end tank where they always are.  Arriving back at his shop I was looking at the tanks and noticed he had the normally fathead tank on the end was now marked Crappie.  No wonder the minnows were so small! Oh well.  Regardless of the minimal catch, Petey did much better and certainly more hardcore than I expected.  It was a great outing and he promised to go out with me again, something I look forward to.

Today's event was my past due colonoscopy, something I honestly look forward too.  About 14 years ago I discovered blood in my stool, not a very exciting proposition.  A subsequent examination removed a polyp, which was explained as a problem waiting to happen.  The next one was scheduled 2 years later and with a clean report they are now scheduled every 5 years.  My doctor reminded me that I was over 18 months past due and suggested I get this taken care of.  I am sure many of you have already experienced this wonderful medical procedure and have enjoyed the prep almost as much!  For those who haven't, you should look forward to this important procedure.  Colon Cancer is nothing to ignore.  If you are 50 or have a family history of colon cancer please allow yourself to be checked out as the picture says it all.  Besides, it's really fun to chug down a gallon of GoLytely only to go heavy an hour later, not really but honestly, it isn't that bad.  Equally humiliating is having to lay down while a skilled physician lubes you up and inserts a 6 foot combination camera, air hose, vacuum cleaner.  This is a great time to ask the doc to look for your hat as it must be there as I have had some people tell me my head is up my ................. he'll smile.  I learned today that they use carbon dioxide gas to inflate your colon verses plain air.  Apparently the CO2 is reabsorbed into the body causing little to no discomfort, he was right.   The report was great, clean as a whistle and more importantly, peace of mind.  For those who have gone through this, you know what I mean.  For those who haven't, don't let a potential time bomb tick away.

A final note, the Packers won in convincing fashion last Saturday against their rival the Minnesota Vikings.  Saturday night they play the 49er's and it should be a great game.  Thursday night is my annual date with Keith and his wife Jane, both working their booth at the St. Paul Sportsman Show.  I haven't seen him since Alaska and it will be good to get together.  With a little luck I can sneak out before the game and get a few panfish on a local lake.  Next week is looking like a trip back to Red Lake may be in the cards.  A busy week for sure................GO PACKERS!

1 comment:

Otto said...

It was a great, high-scoring game. Would have been even better if the Pack had come out on top!